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Max Von Sydow as Knut Hamsun

Salute to Max von Sydow at Eighty BY PETER COWIE

It’s all too easy to classify Max as a Bergman actor and not much else. But his work for Jan Troell has been enormously fruitful. They have made seven films together, at least three of which are classics—The Emigrants, The New Land, and The Flight of the Eagle—and the latest of which, Hamsun, features a subtle and perceptive portrait of Norway’s most notorious writer.

Forever tarnished by his shocking support of the Nazi occupation during World War II, Norwegian Nobel Laureate Knut Hamsun was once his country’s most illustrious and revered author. Spanning the final 17 years of his life, this searing biopic — featuring a flawlessly nuanced performance by Max von Sydow as Hamsun — recounts the writer’s fall from grace. Ghita Nørby portrays Hamsun’s embittered, manipulative wife. (Netflix)

One film I would recommend is Wim Wenders’ “Until the End of the World,” lambasted by critics at its release in the early 90s, but it’s an epic, beautiful film. Von Sydow’s scenes with the equally fabulous Jeanne Moreau are the highlight of the film. Find the five-hour director’s cut if you can. (Collin Kelly from a comment booth of Criterion article)

And also Max Von Sydow and Julie Andrews worked together twice, “Hawaii” and “Duet for One”.

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